The Diocese of Cubao has announced that the Vatican has bestowed the title and dignity of a “minor basilica” on Santuario de San Pedro Bautista in Quezon City.
The Santuario is the oldest church in the area and has been under the pastoral care of the Franciscans.
The Santuario is the second “minor basilica” in the diocese to be declared after the Minor Basilica of the National Shrine of Our Lady of Mount Carmel which declared in November of 2018.
The solemn declaration of the Shrine as a Minor Basilica was held in March 2019.
There are only 17 churches across the Philippines that carry this rare designation.
Minor basilicas are traditionally named because of their antiquity, dignity, historical value, architectural and artistic worth, and significance as centers of worship.
The bestowal of the title initiates a very particular bond between the basilica and the pope.
Papal symbols signifying the relationship will also be installed and blessed at a Mass solemnizing the designation of the shrine as a basilica later this year.
The shrine is one of the oldest churches in the country, dating back to 1590.
The location of the church is the same area where the parish’s patron saint, San Pedro Bautista, had stayed when he was assigned in the Philippines.
St. Pedro Bautista, a Franciscan missionary and a known theologian, served in the country for 10 years before he was sent to Japan where he was martyred.
The Diocese of Cubao diocese is yet to announce the date of the formal celebration of the declaration.
In a Facebook post, the Santuario de San Pedro Bautista Parish thanked God for the “extraordinary blessing.”
“Let us say a prayer of thanksgiving to Almighty God for this extraordinary blessing given to our parish community! Deo gratias,” read the post.
Aside from declaring the Santuario de San Pedro Parish as a Minor Basilica, the Diocese of Cubao said Pope Francis also granted the pontifical coronation to the image of the Our Lady of Mount Carmel in the Minor Basilica of the National Shrine of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.